Home Rheumatoid Arthritis 5 Ways to Manage Fatigue From Rheumatoid Arthritis

    5 Ways to Manage Fatigue From Rheumatoid Arthritis

    Fatigue is a daily reality for rheumatoid arthritis sufferers whose autoimmune systems are working in overdrive and depleting the body of energy.

    Overview – Rheumatoid Arthritis & Fatigue

    When your body feels like lead and your energy level is next to zero, the last thing you want to do is contend with life. Fatigue is a daily reality for rheumatoid arthritis sufferers whose autoimmune systems are working in overdrive and depleting the body of energy. Fortunately, it is a burden you can lift.

    Identify the Cause of Fatigue

    Cause of Fatigue

    When you experience an rheumatoid arthritis flare-up and find yourself drained, think about everything you did recently that might have triggered this episode. Consider factors like physical overexertion, stressors, sleep deprivation, and meals. Any one of these items can lead to fatigue. Knowing the cause will help you prevent future flare-ups.

    Exercise Is Key

    Moving your body is key to reducing stress, sleeping well, and building up energy. Choose exercises that are right for you; don’t over-exert your body to the point of an rheumatoid arthritis flare-up. You know what you can handle, and it’s okay to take a break when you’re exhausted. If you’re working on a project at home and exhaustion hits, enlist help from your family to complete the work so you can slow down. The success factor is moving your body everyday.

    Establish Good Sleep Habits

    Good sleep habits mean more than just laying in bed when you decide it’s time. Set a standard time you go to bed every night, and stick to it. Don’t consume any caffeine late in the day or drink alcohol immediately before bed. Make sure you eat your last meal at least a few hours before bedtime.

    Keep your bedroom cool and dark, and turn off electronics. It’s tempting to look at your smart phone as you wait to fall asleep, but the blue light the screen emits actually tricks your brain into thinking it’s daytime. Also, try not to nap during your rest breaks. Staying awake a full 16 hours will prepare your body to go to sleep on time.

    Rheumatoid Arthritis & Eating Healthy Foods

    Rheumatoid Arthritis & Eating Healthy Foods

    You know the drill – eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. Avoid processed and fried foods and anything with high sugar and saturated fat content. Watch out for inflammatory foods like dairy products and Omega-6 fatty acids. Opt for anti-inflammatory foods containing Omega-3, like walnuts, flaxseed, and oily fish. Eating healthy means a healthier body, which plays a role in elevating energy levels and fighting off fatigue.

    Keep Your Mood Up

    Feeling down makes pain hurt more and fatigue more exhausting. Depression is common among people with rheumatoid arthritis, leading to the various causes of flare-ups and fatigue, like loss of sleep and lack of exercise. If you are feeling depressed, talk to your doctor about cognitive therapy and possible antidepressant medication. You want to break the cycle of depression so you can focus your energy on exercise and other healthy habits, which in turn, will stave off depression.

    Fatigue Rheumatoid Arthritis

    There is no perfect cure for fatigue, but as you can see, it’s manageable and to some degree preventable. Don’t shy away from talking to your doctor about other ways to fight fatigue as well as controlling your rheumatoid arthritis inflammation.

    What is your experience with Rheumatoid Arthritis and Fatigue?

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    Maren Nader
    Maren Auxier is a freelance writer for Pain Resource. She is passionate about helping patients find ways to feel better and live better lives. In her spare time, Maren enjoys exercising, hiking, yoga and cooking.

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